Vic bushfires

Submitted: Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 11:55
ThreadID: 21951 Views:1767 Replies:3 FollowUps:3
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Hi all.

I know this is a bit of a sore point with those in Vic. Info I came accross today.

Timbercorp Limited has announced that a Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment prescribed fuel reduction burn in the Dunmore State Forest (between Heywood and Bessiebelle in the Western District) on the weekend of 9-10 April re-ignited and burnt through a number of Timbercorp plantations. The fire entered an area of some 400 hectares of plantations but it is estimated that less than 50 hectares of trees have been destroyed. As all plantations are insured against fire, Timbercorp and its grower/investors will suffer no adverse financial impact

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Reply By: Truckster (Vic) - Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 12:09

Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 12:09
Burn-off controversy flares again
By Xavier La Canna
April 11, 2005

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Graphic: The Age
The policy of deliberately burning forests came under renewed attack yesterday after a blaze threatened houses and lives, apparently after breaking control lines.

If it is confirmed that the fire in the Dunmore State Forest started as a controlled burn, it will be the 10th fire to have broken containment lines this autumn.

About 200 firefighters yesterday battled the blaze in the state's west, which has destroyed nearly 1700 hectares of forest.

The Department of Sustainability and Environment said on Saturday that the fire had spread after a controlled burn, lit on Wednesday, broke containment lines. But fire authorities said yesterday they were now investigating the possibility the fire had been started by lightning strikes.

The fire yesterday approached homes in Bessiebelle, near Macarthur, and came within 500 metres of the Princes Highway near Codrington.

Cattle farmer Jack Sharrock from Bessiebelle, a CFA member for 46 years, said he was annoyed at the way prescribed burns were carried out. He said the fire had come within about three kilometres of his home and he feared it would be destroyed.

Advertisement"It should have been left until later," Mr Sharrock said. "A controlled burn used to be done in the winter time and was called a slow burn. Now they have changed the time of year."

He said the fire should not have been lit with hot weather forecast.

Mr Sharrock said he had been told by police that his property was under threat and to prepare to evacuate before the fire was contained about 2.30pm yesterday.

State Opposition Leader Robert Doyle said it appeared to be the second controlled burn that had got out of control in a potentially dangerous way. He called on Environment Minister John Thwaites to explain.

A State Government spokeswoman said yesterday there were no plans to change the policy of prescribed burns.

It (the fire) should have been left until later.
JACK SHARROCK, farmer"Fuel-reduction burning is an integral part of strategies to assist in the control of bushfires and this practice was recommended by the Esplin Report which also called for an increase in the practice," she said.

A Department of Sustainability and Environment spokeswoman said the agency had conducted more than 300 prescribed burns this autumn and only nine were known to have broken control lines. About 55,000 hectares had been burned deliberately this autumn and about 6770 hectares were accidentally set alight, she said.

The spokeswoman retracted an early media release issued jointly by the CFA and the DSE that blamed the fire on the prescribed burn. A CFA spokeswoman said the cause of the fire was under investigation.

"While prescribed burning had been conducted in the vicinity of this wildfire, there was also lightning in the area early on Friday morning," she said.

The fire comes after a blaze at Wilsons Promontory broke control lines and burned through more than 6000 hectares of the 50,000-hectare park.

The Wilsons Promontory fire flared again yesterday, forcing authorities to suspend the planned reopening of Tidal River camping area on Wednesday.

Conservation zoologist Peter Myroniuk was critical of the way burns had been carried out. He said the fire at Wilsons Promontory had put at risk a colony of the rare New Holland mouse and other fires should be confined to undergrowth.

"I am certainly in favour of ecological burns because I see their advantage, but on this scale? No," Mr Myroniuk said.

AnswerID: 106128

Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 14:06

Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 14:06
Bruce, am not sure what happens at DSE but heard about the folks deciding they weren't being paid to get into difficult situations on The 'Prom so stayed out of trouble and let the CFA get in to fight the fire. That is according to one of the CFA guys who actually did go in and fight the fire on 3AW talkback the other day.

On their return they went to tell the DSE folks they had done the job, they found two otherwise engaged across the front seat. I guess that is the best way to get shagged out doing a hard days work with a government department. Better than plowing a firebreak, and not the only way fan your flames so to speak.
FollowupID: 363194

Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 14:09

Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 14:09
gee.. in my 13 yrs in the RFS I never got one legover on the fireground in a truck or troopy...

wheres the photos!!!!
FollowupID: 363195

Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 18:17

Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 18:17
obviously DSE is the go mate. No pix as the fireys were going to a fire, knowing as you do, nothing like that in the CFA.
FollowupID: 363226

Reply By: Leroy - Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 13:17

Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 13:17
DSE = department of scorched earth

AnswerID: 106138

Reply By: Gajm (VIC) - Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 22:42

Monday, Apr 11, 2005 at 22:42
It’s a long weekend
And temps are getting higher
Winds are up to 30 knots
Why don’t we light a fire!

It’s nothing we can’t handle
We’ve done this stuff before
Sure we’ve burnt a lot of bush
But hey..There’s plenty more

There’ll be no mistakes this time
We’ve already thought this thru
Simply start the fire going
Then see what it will do..

There it goes up the hill
See, it's nice and slow
Its pretty when the wind gusts
You can see the embers glow

Um…it’s really speeding up now
How were we supposed to know?
It’s quickly getting bigger
I think it’s time to go

We truly are professionals
It’s just we have bad luck
Lets leave the only pump we brought
And get back on the truck

Should we warn the campers?
Or will they be all right
When thick smoke fills the air
And the sky glows red tonight

Lets all start heading home
Just quickly drive away
I’m sure someone somewhere
Will call the C.F.A

Hey here’s a safe spot we can stop
Where the ground is black and dark
Weren’t we here last weekend?
Oh that’s right, we were…this was a National park
AnswerID: 106256

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